FIELD TRAINING PROGRAM
All newly accepted Explorers must complete the Explorer Field Training (FTO) Program to advance within the Post. The FTO program is designed to provide Explorers with a foundation-level of law enforcement knowledge. The program consists of four (4) training phases, each lasting approximately four weeks and encompassing new and different training material. Explorers must test out of the phase by written or physical examination. The FTO Program is led by a FTO Sergeant and accountable to the Operational Logistics Lieutenant. Explorers are provided a Probationary Explorer Workbook to guide them through the training phases. The following is an outline of the FTO curriculum:
- Post General Orders (Code of Conduct/Rules)
- Organization/Operations of the Post
- Overview of the Pasco Sheriff’s Office
- Week 4: testing (written)
- Duty belt/equipment orientation
- Traffic control and detail management
- Searches and Pat downs
- Week 4: testing (written and practical demonstration)
- Communication and radio etiquette (10 codes, signals, phonetic alphabet, BOLOs)
- Florida State Statutes, common criminal charges, warrantless arrests
- Handcuffing techniques/commands
- Week 4: testing Part I (written)
- Week 5: testing Part II (written and practical demonstration)
- Interviewing/Note Taking
- Officer Safety
- Report Writing
- Week 4: testing (practical scenario)
At each general meeting, Explorers receive classroom instruction on a particular topic which is reinforced through scenarios. Each scenario resembles a real-life situation which deputies may encounter while on patrol. In a training environment, the scenarios challenge the Explorers to make split-second decisions and understand what it feels like to be in a deputy’s position. The scenarios are led by advisors/certified deputies and are facilitated by actors. Training topics include traffic stops, criminal investigation steps, search and arrest procedures, responding to critical incidents (active shooter), building searches, crime scene, calls for service, legal guidelines, and fundamentals of patrol.
RIDE ALONG PROGRAM
The Explorer Program is designed to expose young teenagers and adults to the career of law enforcement. To heighten this experience, Explorers may participate in the Ride Along Program, allowing Explorers to ride along with a certified deputy in Field Operations (patrol), court services (corrections), and/or youth services (school resource officers). It is the intent of this program to offer the Explorers a perspective of how law enforcement interacts with the community on a day-to-day basis and be exposed to agency norms and procedures. Before Explorers can ride along with deputies, Explorers must complete and pass an approved Explorer Ride Along Academy. The Academy curriculum is designed to prepare Explorers for a ride along experience and include topics in officer safety, patrol vehicle familiarization, CJIS limited access training, property/evidence collection, radio communication, first aid (CPR), and Oleoresin Capsicumoc (OC) exposure. The Ride Along Academy is a week-long training event and embraces discipline, preparation, teamwork, and physical fitness.
PISTOL TEAM / FIREARMS ACADEMY
The Explorer Pistol Team is comprised of a maximum of ten (10) Explorers who participate in firearm proficiency training with the agency issued SIG SAUER P320. Explorers interested in becoming a member of the Pistol Team must complete an approved Explorer firearms qualification course, commonly known as the Firearms Academy. The academy consists of a 40-hour course which includes range training and classroom instruction; topics include firearm fundamentals (nomenclature, stance, trigger/breathing control, site alignment/picture, field strip, firearm maintenance, etc.), practice/dry-fire drills, firearm safety, and range rules. Explorers are taught by certified firearm instructors (who are also deputies) and train at multiple facilities, including the Pasco Sheriff’s Office Range. The Pistol Team compete in the annual state competition and quarterly delegate conferences hosted by the Florida Association of Police Explorers (FAPE).
Explorer Post 916 is a member of the Florida Association of Police Explorer (FAPE). The organization is a group of other law enforcement Explorer Programs from across the State. Each quarter (three months), FAPE will host a weekend-long delegates conference for Explorer Posts to attend and receiving training in a particular topic. Topics can range from active shooter, building clearing, traffic stops, in progress calls, and much more. The conference includes training instruction, scenario based training, and FAPE membership meetings. The conference also allows Explorers to meet other Explorers from different agencies/departments.